Do not wait until you have built a large corporation before you start practicing good business ethics and maintaining high standards. Your business is going to grow and if you wait for that to take place before you have defined processes, put in place measures and standards of excellence, it will be difficult to turn around at a later stage. Unless you intend to remain small, begin to install the right culture in your business in terms of people skills, being a good employer, supplier and customer. Allow me please to share eight principles that will guide you as you grow your business.
1. Solve customer problems. Every business is based on the solution of one problem or another. I am surprised when staffs complain that a particular customer is a problem. When that problem ceases, business cease as well. Your business exists because of that “problem”.
2. Satisfy customers when they patronize your business. People have needs that must be satisfied by the brilliance of world – changers, movers and shakers. Currents of favor will flow into your life the moment you solve a problem for somebody.Without needs they’d be no need for business enterprise and without satisfaction of customers the business will not continue to exist.
3. Desire to generate innovative and creative product mixes that you will be proud of. Being motivated by money is a wrong place to start a successful business. I know people who sell products they don’t believe in. It’s like a musician who performs and records to earn a living but prefers to listen to other people’s music.
4. Dare to be different and set yourself apart from “me too, competitors and contenders. You do not necessarily have to do different things even though that will be nice. Do things differently. That difference becomes your source of competitive advantage. Why should customers patronize your restaurant, supermarket or buy your product. You will attract those that need your difference and that different will create your reward.
5. Find your niche by not trying to be everything to everyone. What you focus on you will become. You will only do well when you stay focused on the centre of your calling, expertise or gifting. Focus on your present opportunities and extract even hidden advantage.
6. Define your processes clearly. Make the operational procedures of your organization clear reduced in writing so that there is no ambiguity. Clarity produces order and order increases productivity.
7. Create mechanisms of accountability. By this I mean that you need to create a system which demands transparency and accountability without which you will find yourself demanding accountability from everyone else except yourself. You will become your worst enemy in business if you do not have discipline.
8. Be productive and don’t waste your money hours pursuing non core activities. You know why you are in business so put in the time and dedication required to make it a success.
Despise not the day of small beginning, everything big starts with a seed. Plant your idea as seed and allow it to germinate and grow. You will pleasantly surprise yourself if you begin to grow the idea you have into a formidable business.